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Why soda is bad for expectant mothers
By Caroline Njeri Muiruri | Updated Jan 02, 2019 at 13:42 EAT
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Photo of an expectant woman
SUMMARY

These drinks are the culprits behind diabetes, weight gain, and increased risk of cardiovascular disease

Research performed in Huntington Hospital New York revealed that pregnant women who drink soda have a higher risk of having children with poorer non-verbal problem-solving skills

They say knowledge is power. However, too many of our people seem not to possess this power. As a consequence, as the demand for soft drinks significantly declines in the Western States, here in African countries, the industry is booming.

The decline in the demand is due to scientific research that proves that soft drinks have no nutritional value whatsoever for the body.

These drinks are the culprits behind diabetes, weight gain, and increased risk of cardiovascular disease. When it comes to unborn children, soft drinks are a hazard as they harm the baby’s health before they are born.

Recent studies link the consumption of soft drinks with poor thinking abilities. Research performed in Huntington Hospital New York revealed that pregnant women who drink soda have a higher risk of having children with poorer non-verbal problem-solving skills.

The soda intake affects the neurotransmitters in the child’s brain leading to issues in cognitive and learning development.


The study also raised concerns over diet sodas arguing that they are no better. Diet sodas could also lead to memory and learning difficulties for the child.

The contents in the soda affect the baby’s health. First, soft drinks affect bone development. The carbonated water in the soda erodes the calcium in your bones.

The bones become brittle, and you risk developing back pain. The baby risks developing poor bone density which means a high risk of bone fracture during his/her life.

The caffeine in the soft drinks is a culprit for causing complications. During pregnancy, women are advised to keep off coffee, black tea, and other caffeine-rich beverages. The caffeine may trigger premature births or a miscarriage.

Studies conducted by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists reported that consuming more than 200mg of caffeine a day increases the risk of a miscarriage. A can of soda contains about 32-45mg of caffeine depending on the brand. Sodas have a high concentration of caffeine.

This caffeine is what makes you feel rejuvenated after a drink. On the downside though, this caffeine is hazardous to the infants’ health. The sugar in soft drinks is another concerning issue. The high sugar levels increase the risk of an insulin burst.

An insulin burst occurs because the baby’s liver is not well-developed to respond to the high intake of sugar. This sugar increases the mother’s blood pressure which in turn could lead to cesarean delivery.

The sugars not only increase your chances of gaining weight but also the infant. The child is likely to suffer from obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease.

The artificial sweeteners are not a safe alternative as the chemical compounds contained in the sweetener can negatively affect the baby. There is a lack of consensus as to what amount of soda is safe for baby.

Some physicians will argue that the occasional drink will not harm the child. Alternatively, there are those who would recommend complete withdrawal from soft drinks until after pregnancy. 

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